How do forest counselors provide advice when faced with a situation associated with great uncertainties? What role do knowledge and values have in their advisory practices, and how are they balanced? These kinds of questions are of growing importance, partly because of the increased complexity of a globalised world and partly because of greater awareness of climate change and its consequences. This paper takes this as its point of departure when analyzing how forest counselors provide guidance in extreme cases.

Two empirical cases are analyzed, both associated with a hurricane that hit south Sweden, resulting in damage to 270,000 hectares of forest and 75 million m3 of windthrown trees. The first case concerns how forest counselors handled uncertainties in their advice on how to handle the windthrown forest, which faced a great risk of a major insect outbreak (bark beetle). The second case concerns how forest counselors handled uncertainties concerning the reforestation of the area, where spruce where the most productive species but also the most vulnerable for storms. In conclusion, the implications of the way the forest counselors managed uncertainties are discussed, not least in relation to the general issue of sustainable forestry and climate change.